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Rafa Benitez Confident Of New Signing Before Wednesday

9:54 am, Monday, July 18th, 2016 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 59 Comments

Rafa Benitez is keenly aware that Newcastle need more cover at center-back, with both Fabricio Coloccini and Steven Taylor having left the club this summer and we also lost Mike Williamson back in January.

Newcastle have been trying to sign Grant Hanley from Blackburn for far too long, but Rafa Benitez has said today he thinks the club  will have somebody in soon.

rafa benitez closeup in cap

Rafa Benitez – Newcastle manager

Rafa was asked whether he thought there would be somebody brought in before Wednesday’s game at the Keepmoat Stadium in Doncaster – and this is what Benitez said:

“I hope so.” “We are working hard. Lee Charnley knows that we need bodies to have all the positions covered.”

“We are short of center-backs. We have to manage the minutes and positions.”

“It’s clear that we need bodies in some positions, and I think we will have someone soon.”

Blackburn’s Indian owners Venky’s have been playing hard ball with Newcastle and the reports are that we have just put in our third bid of £5.5M, after earlier bids of £3.5M and £4.5M were turned down.

glen hanley

Grant Hanley – Scottish International center-back

But it seems that Newcastle are still hopeful of getting a deal closed since Grant Hanley is reported to be very keen to join the Rafa revolution – the Rafalution – going on at Newcastle United.

It would be great of we can sign grant Hanley before Wednesday.


Comments welcome.

Tags: Newcastle News · Recruitment · Transfer News and Rumours · Transfer Target

59 responses so far ↓

  • 1 magscar // Jul 18, 2016 at 9:58 AM

    Repost from 2 threads ago as Ed moves quick in mornings

    magscar // Jul 18, 2016 at 9:53 AM

    Jail @7

    I imagine Rafa has a plan b if either or both of Sissoko or Gini are sold. I agree that whether or not he would like matters settled by beginning of season it could as in other years still drag on to end of August.

    Whilst there are well documented areas we need to (and will) cover I am not certain that if both those players were to be sold then both would be replaced with long term replacements soon as.

    Rafa may have ideas on possible replacements but persuading them to come will be even harder than getting those that they are to replace to stay. After all both Sissoko and Gini are on long term contracts and club can insist on them staying if they were so inclined.

    Rafa will have his valuations as to their worth to him and bids above that may be considered. If either go I am not necessarily expecting all proceeds to be reinvested if he can’t get who he would like immediately. Funds will be needed for January if there are problems with injuries , loss of form etc but also for next summer. We seem to have been fortunate this summer with the PL monies for 2015-16 and residue of monies already in bank but end of next season doesn’t bring an immediate replenishment even if we go straight back up.

    Ashley prefers cash up front deals rather than HP ones so Rafa will need a war chest to compete with even those sides finishing 15th to 16th in PL and winning Championship won’t provide anywhere near what we will have missed out on.

    Like other clubs he could borrow against 2017-18 placing money if we are promoted but I don’t think he would like to get on that train.

    As usual I am content to trust in Rafa to get most decisions right and am relaxed about the speculation . Hopefully my optimism is good for several seasons ?

  • 2 WWSBRD // Jul 18, 2016 at 9:58 AM

    Fair enough mate didn’t mean to put words in ur mouth. How do u know Sissoko is professional enough to play properly though? Lads played LB for us last season and Rafa made him captain…seems he disagrees with u mate

  • 3 The overrated Frenchman // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:01 AM

    Take the money for Gini. Sels was bought to be first choice. Lascelles is not like Des Walker.

  • 4 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:04 AM


    Ok no worries.

    Shop window syndrome. It was his last few chances to attract a suitor, as he wasn’t guaranteed playing time in France. This is just my opinion, but I strongly believe that, if he is not sold, he will mope or even refuse to play. I would like to be wrong, of course. I woulf prefer it if any player who starts the season in Black and White, will do thier best and earn thier pay.

  • 5 martoon // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:07 AM

    WWSBRD @2 Sissoko only started playing well for the last few matches of the season. Whether this was the Rafa effect or that the French squad was going to be selected soon I’m not quite sure. However for most of the season he was pants which culminated in him being booed of when was subbed I think against Bournemouth!

  • 6 WWSBRD // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:09 AM

    I think they are both likely to do that tbh mate I reckon Gini is just as much of a get as Sissoko but gets an incredibly easy ride from fans

  • 7 martoon // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:14 AM

    Off topic I’d like to wish Demba Ba a speedy recovery – I don’t like to see any player with a leg break especially an ex-toon player.

  • 8 WWSBRD // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:15 AM

    And Gini played well in 3/4 games yet didn’t get booed…so?

  • 9 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:17 AM


    Fair enough. I suppose we will see what we shall see come the start of the season. It would be nice if one or both of them have an attack of “Jonas Gutirrez” and decide to help us back up!

  • 10 jazzyp // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:17 AM

    That is the opinion of many Forest fans mate, Not mine.
    Everyone is entitled to there’s buddy !!

  • 11 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:18 AM

    Gutierrez even

  • 12 Our Toon // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:18 AM

    Plenty of chat about gini and sissoko not wanting to be here. If fans are realistic not many of the squad want to be here and why would they with the way it has been run under Ashley.

    We’ve made some decent signings and no doubt the new lads joined because of the size of the club. Only a couple of teams in the world that players don’t want to leave to go somewhere bigger as their isn’t somewhere bigger to go to…..Barcelona, Real Madrid and possibly Bayern Munich. These are the elite clubs, every other clubs players want to take a challenge at that next step.

    We are like 99% of clubs in the world, a stepping stone. If you only want players that want to be here then the squad won’t come back up and if it does then it will yoyo between the prem and championship!!

  • 13 expatmag // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:21 AM


    Who is Skippy?

    So….you reckon that a new goalkeeper signing from the Belgian league who has captained the mighty Ghent qualifies to captain Newcastle United in his first season at the club?

    Hmmmmm…….I bet you anything you like RIGHT NOW that he is not even considered by Rafa.

    In fact, I bet Rafa would prefer Elliott as captain when fit before him if he were to choose a keeper as captain.

    You really need to get a grip, sunshine

  • 14 Jib // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:25 AM

    This just highlights Rafa’s problems this window.

    Burnley who are now in the PL – fancy Tom Lees – Sheffield think he may go – so turn their focus to Grant Hanley who has just had his price cranked up to £8 million.

  • 15 Our Toon // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:29 AM


    I know a couple of forest fans and they seem to think both Lascelles and Darlow are canny pap, both have potential but not anywhere near the standard they should have reached. Doing a jib I found some of these on Google when I remembered the players being blasted and fans asking for them to be dropped

    There’s plenty of more that can be found. I hope Lascelles proves them wrong but Darlow I have very little hope for

  • 16 Our Toon // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:31 AM

    On captain, I’d pick Gamez based on his affect of the Athleti side both on and off the field and his character on and off the pitch. Plus his experience is an added bonus

  • 17 Ron Knee // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:37 AM

    Our Toon

    Gamez would be a good choice, but does he speak enough English to communicate?

  • 18 Jib // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:42 AM

    When Expat was over in the UK last season he went to a game at SJP with Jail for Ashley and Mr Tuff.
    I caught up with them at Nine Bar

  • 19 martoon // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:46 AM

    WWSBRD @8 – I wasn’t talking about Gini but I would argue he played well in more than 3-4 games, not enough mind you but more than 3-4.
    You said about Sissoko “Lads played LB for us last season and Rafa made him captain…seems he disagrees with u mate”. The answer to your “so?” is I’m saying he only played well for the last few game – and that may have well been for personal reasons i.e. to get in the French squad.

  • 20 expatmag // Jul 18, 2016 at 10:58 AM


    I wont even give you the pleasure of opening that nonsense.

    As you have now reduced yourself to insulting behaviour once again, which I am sure will not have gone unnoticed by Ed, it just goes to show your inability to support any footballing claims you have on here as the fount of all knowledge.

    You are a particularly boring individual who is probably very lonely too…….No wonder with an attitude like yours.

    You have my sympathys

  • 21 carl // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:05 AM

    You’re better off leaving it mate. He really is a dull boring type who’s trying to grap attention and give the appearance of being remotely interesting by mentioning your name. He knows nowt!
    Can you imagine a compilation of his best posts.

  • 22 Our Toon // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:06 AM


    Football is a universal game and won’t take long for him to pick the language up as it’s not complicated. He’s got basic English but more importantly we have players in the squad that speak many languages. Don’t think his English is any worse than colo or sissoko’s.

  • 23 Spoof // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:08 AM

    Both Gini and Sissoko may want to be elsewhere but that doesn’t mean that we should sell them due to fear of creating a bad atmosphere as more times than not when players are forced to stay they actually just knuckle down and become better players, we saw that with Cabaye when we refused to allow him to go to Arsenal and what followed was probably the best we saw from Cabaye, this also happened with Bale at Spurs and both Ronaldo and De Gea at Manure, so with that in mind why not keep both Sissoko and Wijnaldum as it may well happen with them as well, and if we do go straight back up the chances are both of them may be happy to stay put, certainly I would imagine that Wijnaldum would be happy to stay, not sure about Sissoko mind as I get the impression that PL football alone would not be enough for his ego, but personally I hope that Rafa digs his heels in and keeps the pair of them.

  • 24 carl // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:10 AM

    52carl // Jul 18, 2016 at 7:22 AM
    This has gone viral in Melbourne:

    Yer Right Buster!
    If you just happened to say I will not take criticism from expatmag because he’s a halfwit who wouldn’t recognise an incisive point if it stabbed him between the eyes, I’d be inclined to agree with you.

    But as you haven’t !!

  • 25 Veltmann // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:11 AM

    Ha ha, Jib- that post quiet made me chuckle. .
    Sorry couldn’t resist 😀

  • 26 jayphoto // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:16 AM

    Sels was exceptional in the champions league last year, on the cusp of the Belgian squad. The fact that he’s joined a championship club for me suggests he’ll be number 1.
    Darlow is a solid back up keeper, not quite #1 level.
    Elliot , is one I don’t understand the clamour for. Yes he is very brave, and he has decent close range reactions. This has led to him having performances where he looked world class but if you look at it from a goalkeeping level the guy really isn’t great.His decision making is poor,his positioning isn’t amazing and his rushing is laboured. his taking of crosses is average. His long range shot stopping is poor (stoke away last year for example) And he gets beaten far too often with shots that are too central. Add that to the fact that his physique shows that he either doesn’t train, or doesn’t diet professionally and this has led him to be susceptible to injury. Even when he’s playing he always has a strain or niggle. How can he be number 1 when he can’t stay fit for more than half a season?
    I think Krul is off… pretty sure hes got 1 year left on his contract? Hes gone stagnate for me at Newcastle. Seen people say Rafa might get him back to his best, but i’m pretty sure Rafa kept on the same goalkeeping coaching as McClaren? Sometimes a complete change of scenery is needed

  • 27 Hail Wor Ashley // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:16 AM

    Have any of you saddos bickering ceased at all in the 6 weeks I’ve been absent, or are you so invested in your blog persona you can’t let up for a few weeks? Still rehashing arguments most have long forgotten the origin of.

  • 28 Veltmann // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:17 AM

    Without doubt the likely departure of Wijnaldum will weaken the team as well as the bid to get promote straight away.Losing another key player is unthinkable unless Benitez somehow brought in like for like replacement.Which is difficult to attract one in this division.

  • 29 Spoof // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:19 AM

    There are a lot of people on this site who need to grow up and show a bit of respect to one another and particularly to those of us who just want to chat about football, show some consideration or the site could well close down as many have already left due to the childish behavior of a few and others will soon follow and what will be left will be a non football related cat fight which could be enough for Ed to say sod it, I’ve had enough, so do yourselves and all of us a favour, either stop posting or continue but in a respective manner.

  • 30 Mister Tuff // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:20 AM

    carl (the little “c”) – stop your mischief and goading. You were trying it yesterday as well but I note you were chased off by a couple of posters who do not usually get involved in the rucks.
    Give it a rest man.

  • 31 jayphoto // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:22 AM

    Moussa has to go now for himself! His stock in world football will never be higher than it is right now after those euros. I think we’ve all seen enough of him to know his inconsistencies and pros and cons. Hes a player that relies on athleticism and power and players like that seem to decline after 28-30 in most cases. Not sure he reads the game well enough or has the technical ability to be a top player without the pace and power. His chance at an elite level club is now or never potentially as a storming season in the championship won’t be noticed by the likes of juventus and he’ll be a year older. He doesn’t want to stay. Anything over 24m for him is great business. He was being valued at 12m last season if I remember rightly.

  • 32 carl // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:22 AM

    You still are being moderated remember.

  • 33 Yo-yo // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:26 AM

    I don’t have a problem with a young Lascelles becoming captain. It’s down to character. If he thinks the way Rafa wants, and he has the cojones then fine. I can’t think of a better man than Rafa to develop players – WTF were we thinking about with Tufty ?

    As for the 2 wantaways – I’l bet Rafa with his meticulous preparation, has a file with at least 3 replacements for each, maybe not the finished article, but enough commitment for us not to miss them – as that is what they are both missing – commitment. Worth a few bob that..

  • 34 Yo-yo // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:28 AM


    You are being just as snide as the guys who you feel are attacking you

  • 35 carl // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:30 AM

    Under Self regulation, it is a risky practice to attempt to protect your miscreant boys. This could well be at a cost to yourself. Stop and think because someone less generous than me would draw this to Ed’s attention. Think on it.

    No need to reply to this warning.

  • 36 carl // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:33 AM

    Just out of interest who are the people who I think are attacking me ? !

  • 37 Spoof // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:34 AM


    give it rest mate, your boring and spoiling the forum for others, why not ignore and only respond to those who you can get on with.

  • 38 G // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:36 AM

    See, this bickering is why a lot of old regulars such as myself find other things to do other than join in the blog these days. Do us all a favour, and give it a rest.

  • 39 carl // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:38 AM

    I have to go but thanks for your continued support. It’s just a few who ruin the blog for the rest of us. Still I understand Ed has the issue under control with the latest moderation.

  • 40 cyprus // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:38 AM

    On those two Forest players, I recall their fans saying we got two very good players and we should be playing them.

    Krul must be gone as he’s clearly number two now.

    It may be that we’ll lose both Gini and Sissoko. We need at least one replacement in their class, a 20+ mil player.

    No idea about this Blackburn guy, he must be good if we insist so much.

  • 41 expatmag // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:38 AM


    carl who???????

    Ignorance is bliss in his case…….lol

  • 42 Spoof // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:39 AM


    if this continues like yourself I will just not bother or use the site rarely, there is no enjoyment in it when we have so much immaturity.

  • 43 jayphoto // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:39 AM

    For me, Rafa can make Sammy Ameobi captain and I’ll trust him on it. Rafa is no yes man, he sees the players day in day out, he knows them. Whoever he chooses, whoever he buys and sells , for the first time since Sir Bobby, i’ll be onboard. The guy knows more than us. He’s won league titles, the champions league – each time with teams that weren’t favourites to win, he knows what he’s doing. Lets be honest he shouldn’t be anywhere near the championship!
    I agree that perhaps Lascelles would be better learning his trade before captaining. My guess is it’ll depend on who goes and stays but I can see Tiote or Sissoko captaining if either stays. If both go I can see it being Gamez who captained Malaga and is a leader. All depends on who plays though, i’d argue Siem De Jong is captain material if hes in the starting line up

  • 44 Spoof // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:42 AM


    you really do need to take a look at yourself, on this particular thread you have now made six posts and not one of them has been football related, like I say take a good look at yourself and stop blaming others, and there are many others who need to do the same ?

  • 45 expatmag // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:44 AM

    Back to football

    I fully expect the likes of Wijnaldum Thauvin Sissoko Krul Tiote to be gone by the time the teansfer window closes with the coffers swollen by anything up to 70 million pounds.

    Question will be who is coming in to replace them

  • 46 Spoof // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:47 AM


    trusting Rafa is one thing but Sammy the captain is a bit much, but I do know what you mean and I do agree, for me our signings haven’t really got me that excited as non of them for me have had the wow factor but at the same time I do believe that they will do us a really good job as they do seem to be players who have been bought in for a reason with the reason being that we needed strengthening in there position.

  • 47 Spoof // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:48 AM

    jayphoto not jatphoto, sorry mate.

  • 48 jayphoto // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:49 AM

    @Cyprus – I heard Hanley from Blackburn is Burnleys first choice If they sell keane which they seemingly are about to. So reckon we’ll miss out on him. Hes a decent player. A defender first and foremost that doesn’t shirk a challenge. My opinion is he would improve us, but then we could sign better players too. Would have loved to have seen us sign ayala!
    Michael Dawson was probably the best CB in the championship last year which is a measure of the standard

  • 49 carl // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:51 AM

    I was on earlier this morning talking football.
    There are only a few causing trouble and as I said they’re currently being moderated. One individual has taken note and is on his very best behaviour. I have posted since 2007 and I was driven off by loutish types. I have been actively asked to continue to post by the genuine types.

  • 50 Mister Tuff // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:52 AM

    I am not being moderated – another lie.
    Please provide proof.
    Says it all really – why anyone would want to engage at all with someone intent of causing mischief and ultimately killing off the blog forever is beyond me.
    Give it a rest man – you were chased off the blog yesterday and again today.

  • 51 jayphoto // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:54 AM

    @Spoof – I think its because we look at players based against premier league standards. The championship is a huge drop in quality though. In that league Gayle is a 25 goal striker and Ritchie was the best player in the league 2 years ago, and he’s got better since.
    Perhaps we are taking the wow players into the championship with us already? Shelvey, Colback, Mbemba, Mitrovic, Lascelles, would never sign for championship clubs. If they stay, I think they just might be the wow players in that league

  • 52 jayphoto // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:56 AM

    Last years wow player in the championship was Joey Barton… I love joey but none of us would have thought he’d be good enough for our first 11 in his 30’s. Its a big show of the level the championship is at. Barry Bannan made team of the season last year too….

  • 53 Spoof // Jul 18, 2016 at 11:58 AM


    if so then why not zip it, ignore and talk football, sorry mate but from what I can see is yes, you will talk football but the first opportunity you get to get involved in a cat fight you take it, for me you are as guilty as anyone for the bickering and as a result you should also be stopped from posting, so if you want people to change their minds about you then you know what you have to do, but are you disciplined enough to do that, from what I have witnessed I would say you aren’t, but it’s solely up to yourself !

  • 54 jayphoto // Jul 18, 2016 at 12:02 PM

    Always find it odd no one seems particularly bothered about Shelvey staying. I think he lost his place because rafa just needed 2 destroyers in midfield and didn’t have time to change too much and implement a system. The way shelvey plays too, he needs runners and movement to show themselves and we didn’t have that but Shelvey can be a really devastating player. He didn’t get 10 england caps playing for Swansea (a place the England manager rarely goes) for nothing. His passing range is sublime! His vision, his assists… He played at a high consistent level for Swansea for 2 years so its not like he was inconsistent.
    His attitude has been great too, didn’t throw his toys out the pram when he lost his place,actually seems a thoughtful guy in his interviews, hasn’t publically looked for a move, in fact he said he was here regardless back in march… Hired a personal trainer and spent all preseason getting fitter and leaner… Hes a level way above the championship, with Gayle running in behind next season I think Shelvey will be our star player.

  • 55 expatmag // Jul 18, 2016 at 12:05 PM


    Have you been moderated? Cannot see it myself.

  • 56 expatmag // Jul 18, 2016 at 12:08 PM


    If he can get vack the form he showed when he got selected for the England squads, he could be crucial but I think we need another playermaker like Will Hughes, just in case

  • 57 Spoof // Jul 18, 2016 at 12:19 PM


    where would Shelvey play, for me he is better playing really deep so in Rafa’s system it would be as one of the two holding players, yes he can tackle but is he a holding player, I’m not sure that he is, for him to play there for me he would need a really strong and powerful ball winner so we would end up with a pairing similar to that of Tiote and Cabaye with Shelvey playing the Cabaye role but unless Tiote stays which is doubtful then we could struggle to get a suitable partner for Shelvey as Anita,Saivet and Colback for me wouldn’t be strong enough to do for Shelvey what Tiote did for Cabaye, we do also now have Hayden and seeing that he has often been used as a CB then possibly he could be strong enough to do the Tiote role but due to the fact that I have never seen the lad play I don’t know if he would be strong enough, if he isn’t then it could well be Colback alongside Hayden who gives us a strong back bone so where would that leave Shelvey as he isn’t a number 10.

  • 58 jimmysmith // Jul 18, 2016 at 12:20 PM

    I think Shelvey only gets in the team as the more attack minded of two central midfielders, in which case he really did need to lose the excess weight to allow him to run about a bit more. Cabaye did that, and would get a foot in. A fit industrious Shelvey would be great alongside Tiote in the Championship, or Colback, with an astonishing array of talent available to choose from to play in the hole ahead of them, whether it be Sissoko, Widjnaldum, De Jong, Perez, or Gayle off the shoulder of Mitro. The money being bandied about is tempting and not outlandish, but Benitez will recognise that promotion is far more important. It’s not a forgone conclusion that we’ll lose our stars, nor even that they are actively looking for the move, Sissoko aside, but after 3 and half years, it might just be in his and our interests to part company anyway.

  • 59 NoahJ // Jul 18, 2016 at 1:22 PM

    for me, mbemba and lascelles have to start at centre half next season. that partnership was one of only a few positives from last year.

    However, with the amount of games ahead, we also need another ‘starter’ (i.e. someone who can start if needed). then we have the likes of Satka and Good (if he will ever play for us again) to be the young prospects coming through

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